WPP PR revenue up 3.2% in H1 2010

LONDON: WPP Group has reported a revenue increase of 3.5% for the first half of 2010, as its global PR and public affairs revenues grew by 3.2%.

NEW YORK: WPP Group has reported a revenue increase of 3.5% for the first half of 2010, as its global PR and public affairs revenues grew by 3.2%.

The 2010 interim results, which were released today, also showed growth in WPP's branding & identity, healthcare and specialist communications businesses at just above 2%.

Like-for-like revenue for the group, whose PR agencies include Ogilvy, Burson-Marsteller, Cohn & Wolfe, and Hill & Knowlton, was up by 2.5% and its overall profit before tax rose 36%.

In a statement, WPP said the positive results reflected the recovering US market and traditional media “biting back”. Commenting on the US specifically the statement added: “In our 25 years of existence, we cannot remember a more speedy recovery or turnaround of a region, from almost -6% in like-for-like revenue growth in the fourth quarter of 2009, to almost +4% in the first quarter of 2010 and +8% in the second quarter and at a similar level in July.”

Looking ahead, WPP remained cautiously optimistic, noting that plans, budgets and forecasts will be made on a “conservative basis.” The statement added: “As the world stabilizes and probably avoids a "double dip" at least, the Group continues to concentrate on its long-term targets and strategic objectives of improving operating profits by 10-15%.”

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